IPL 10, Match 24, RPS v SRH – Rising Pune Supergiant Predicted XI
Steve Smith will be looking to exploit Sunrisers' struggles away from home this season.
Published - Apr 21, 2017 9:40 pm | Updated - Apr 22, 2017 2:42 pm
A 6-day break must have given the Rising Pune Supergiant team time to regroup and recuperate. Their skipper Steven Smith spent the time-off judicially as he went for a short trip to Dubai. He must be feeling fresh and raring to go for his team’s clash against Sunrisers Hyderabad.
Sunrisers Hyderabad continued their home dominance as they beat Delhi Daredevils comfortably by 15 runs in their last game. The Warner-led side has been in red-hot form at home. They are third on the points table with 4 wins and 2 losses, but the alarming fact is that they have not won once playing away from their den. Warner would be wary of this and would want to change this pattern at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune.
Rising Pune Supergiant come into this game with some confidence. They held back a power-packed RCB in chase of a par score of 162 at Bangalore last week. Their bowlers delivered a spirited performance, keeping the likes of Kohli, de Villiers and Jadhav quiet. This was a much-needed win for the struggling RPS side and they can only get better from here. They have the right personnel to take them into the upper half of the points table.
This will be RPS’s third home game. They won’t tinker with their XI much especially after a thrilling win in the last game. Let us have a look at the possible XI Steve Smith will go with for this game:
Openers (Ajinkya Rahane and Rahul Tripathi)
After getting off to a flying start in his franchise’s first game this season, where he scored a majestic 60, Rahane hasn’t since played the kind of knocks which are usually associated with him. He got off to a start against RCB but couldn’t capitalize on it, getting dismissed for 30. RPS needs more contributions from India’s Test vice-captain at the top of the order.Rahane has been a consistent run-getter in the IPL as his average of 34.49 suggests. The class the man possesses, Rahane will come good sooner rather than later. Following Mayank Agarwal’s failure, Rahul Tripathi was pushed to open the innings. He has provided flying starts to RPS and can be a perfect foil for Rahane’s style of play.
Rahane has been a consistent run-getter in the IPL as his average of 34.49 suggests. The class the man possesses, Rahane will come good sooner rather than later. Following Mayank Agarwal’s failure, Rahul Tripathi was pushed to open the innings. He has provided flying starts to RPS and can be a perfect foil for Rahane’s style of play.
Middle Order (Steve Smith, Manoj Tiwary, MS Dhoni and Ben Stokes)
Steve Smith has been in fine form and will occupy the number 3 spot. There has been a lot of clamor about Manoj Tiwary’s batting position. Otherwise a top order batsman, Tiwary has been made to bat in the lower middle-order, much to the disappointment of the cricketing experts. He should ideally be coming in at 4, for he is someone who can build an innings and then explode at the end. He is in a decent form and has proven his credentials in the limited opportunities he has got so far in the season.
Ben Stokes was acquired for a huge price, Rs 14.5 crores making him the most expensive overseas player ever, but has failed to make an impact, especially with the bat. He has been decent with the bowl and was also the Man of The Match for his 3/18 against RCB, but his batting has failed to click. He usually bats at 6 for his country, but RPS has sent him mostly at 4 this year. Stokes is more of a bowler-batsman instead of the other way round and must bat at 6. He can play a similar role to what Chris Morris is playing for Delhi Daredevils.
This makes a huge case for Dhoni to bat at 5. Agreed that he is struggling, but more time to build an innings will help him to score runs. He looked in good touch in his knock of 28 against RCB and there is no reason why he can’t do what he has always done at the IPL i.e. score runs consistently.
All-rounder (Daniel Christian)
The Australian all-rounder lends balance to RPS’s squad. He can bat at the back end of an innings and score quickly. His ability with the ball is what RPS relies more on. His spell of 0/26 against RCB was as crucial as Stokes’ as the former kept the runs down in the middle overs. The 33-year old has a lot of experience under his belt and RPS will want to use it to their advantage.
Bowlers (Shardul Thakur, Jaydev Unadkat, Imran Tahir and Rahul Chahar)
Shardul Thakur’s last over, which was the 18th of the innings, against RCB turned the match in his team’s favour. His double strike – Binny and Negi – delivered the knockout punch and eventually won RPS the game. His figures of 3/35 might look a bit expensive but he got wickets at crucial junctures to ensure that RPS gets those two important points.Unadkat too bowl brilliantly along with seasoned campaigner Imran Tahir. Both went under 7 runs an over and picked 3 wickets between them. Chahar did not get a bowl but being a wrist spinner, he warrants a selection. This bowling attack has suddenly started looking a dangerous one. Steve Smith has a lot of options up his sleeves and is more than capable of using them wisely.
Unadkat too bowled brilliantly along with seasoned campaigner Imran Tahir. Both went under 7 runs an over and picked 3 wickets between them. Chahar did not get a bowl but being a wrist spinner, he warrants a selection. This bowling attack has suddenly started looking a dangerous one. Steve Smith has a lot of options up his sleeves and is more than capable of using them wisely.